Large diameter, carbon-carbon composite, monofilaments were produced from the pyrolysis of organic precursor resins reinforced with high-strenght carbon fibers. The mechanical properties were measured before and after pyrolysis and the results were correlated with the properties of the constituents. The composite resulting from the combination of Thornel 75 and GW-173 resin precursor produced the highest tensile strength. The importance of matching strain-to-failure of fibers and matrix to obtain all the potential reinforcement of fibers is discussed. Methods are described to reduce, within the carbonaceous matrix, pyrolysis flaws which tend to reduce the composite strength. Preliminary studies are described which demonstrated the feasibility of fiber-matrix copyrolysis to alleviate matrix cracking and provide an improved matrix-fiber interfacial bonding.